Dr Henry Connor MD, FRCP

Institute of Applied Health Research
Honorary Research Fellow

Contact details

+44 (0)121 415 8174
+44 (0)121 414 4036
History of Medicine Unit
90 Vincent Drive
College of Medical and Dental Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Connor’s areas of research include 1) the history of anaesthesia, particularly military anaesthesia and 2) the history of provincial medicine and provincial medical societies and associations in the nineteenth century.
He is a member and previous council member of the History of Anaesthesia Society. He is a member of several societies relating to the history of medicine and has lectured to the British Society for the History of Medicine, History of Medicine Society of Wales, the Birmingham Society for the History of Medicine, the Herefordshire Medical Society and the West Sussex History of Medicine Society.


  • Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of London 1985
  • MD (Cantab) 1980
  • MB, BChir, MA (Cantab) 1970


Henry Connor read Natural Sciences and Social Anthropology at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge before going to the Westminster Hospital in London for the clinical component of his medical studies. After qualifying in 1970 he held junior posts at the Westminster Hospital. In 1972 he moved to Oxford as senior house officer and registrar and then held a post as a Medical Research Council Fellow. In 1976 he was appointed University Lecturer in Pharmacology and Therapeutics in the University of Sheffield before taking up a post as Consultant Physician in Hereford in 1979. While in Hereford he published on various aspects of general medicine and on diabetes. He was elected West Midlands Regional Adviser to the Royal College of Physicians (1995-2001) and was involved with several committees at the College. Internationally he was a member of the European Consensus Group on Critical Limb Ischaemia 1988-90, of the Nutrition Study Group, European Association for Study of Diabetes (EASD) 1986-94, of the International Steering Group (1997-2004) and Editorial Board (2001-04) for Consensus Guidelines on the Diabetic Foot and a Founder Member of the Diabetes Foot Study Group of EASD (by election) 1999-2004. Since retiring he has pursued his interest in the history of medicine, as described above.


Medical Science BMedSc (History of Medicine)

Postgraduate supervision

Dr. Connor no longer supervises students but does offer informal guidance with projects in the history of medicine.


Dr. Connor’s present projects include the history of military anaesthesia, the contribution of anaesthetic research to the origins of experimental pharmacology in the 1850s and 60s, the history of the Herefordshire Medical Association, and the work of Sir Joseph Fayrer (Indian Medical Service) with particular reference to the political implications of his role as head of the medical department at the India Office in the late 19th century.

Other activities

Dr. Connor is member of the Council of the Friends of Hereford Cathedral and is also a cathedral and a city guide in Hereford.


Publications since 2011:

Was James Young Simpson asked to administer chloroform à la Reine in 1848? History of Anaesthesia Society Proceedings 2011; 44: 20-9

All Saints Church in Hereford and the Brethren of St. Antoine-de-Viennois Transactions of the Woolhope Naturalists Field Club 2011; 59: 85-90

Benjamin Ward Richardson and his Contribution to Anaesthesia. In: Askitopoulou H, ed. History of Anaesthesia VII. Proceedings of the 7th International Symposium on the History of Anaesthesia. Heraklion: Crete University Press, 2012: 461-480

Medical Politician and Man of Olympian Vision and Energy: Dr. William Penny Brookes (1809-95) of Much Wenlock. Journal of Medical Biography 2012; 20: 111-125

Wenlock and Mandeville (Editorial) Journal of Medical Biography 2012; 20: 93-94

Thomas Paytherus – entrepreneurial surgeon-apothecary and ardent Jennerian. Journal of Medical Biography 2013; 21: 169-179 (Jointly with Clark DM)

Edward Lawrie revisited. History of Anaesthesia Society Proceedings 2013; 46: 107-124

Siegle’s Steam Spray Inhaler. Journal of Medical Biography accepted for publication.

Lady Brilliana Harley (1598-1643): Her medicines and her doctors. Journal of Medical Biography published online March 2014